An Heirloom Tea with the Lorings

Thank you, all, for the many teas that you enjoyed with friends and family last week in honor of Emilie Loring. Your enthusiasm and creativity made this first event a terrific success! If you haven’t seen the final collection of photos and stories, they are here: Welcome to our tea party. So happy you could come!

In that post, you saw the youngest generation of Emilie Loring descendants joining our festivities in “A Loring Family Tea.” Today, we have an extraordinary treat. Tuulikki and Becky share the heirloom setting for their afternoon tea party followed by sherry before dinner–a rare invitation to join them in their home and to imagine what it was like when Emilie Loring was there.

best heirloom tea
Emilie Loring’s silver tea service
This silver service and butterfly teacup came from Emilie Loring’s household. Can you imagine her presiding?
He smiled at his mother who in a silvery gray costume was presiding at the tea table. Why didn’t all white-haired women wear large pinkish-red hats, he wondered, as he noticed that the color of hers was rosily reflected on her hair and skin. She had the charm of a Marquise escaped from a French fan.  High of Heart
I love the way things are passed down in families. The monogrammed tablecloth, “MVL,” belonged to Emilie’s daughter-in-law, Mary Valentine Loring, who was married to Emilie’s son Selden. The leather-bound book is How Can the Heart Forget?–special to me, because it’s the first Loring book that I read.  The flowers came from the garden of Mary’s daughter-in-law, Tuulikki: “Emilie loved yellow flowers!”
(We met Tuulikki and her husband, Selden, in “Treasure at the Lorings.”)
best Venus
Emilie Loring heirlooms
Victor and Emilie Loring had this statue of Venus in their Wellesley Hills home (ca. 1896).  The gold-leafed goblet is from a set owned first by Emilie’s sister, Rachel Baker Gale. The books are some of the many given as gifts to the family as they were published.
best vignette
Portrait miniature, ca. 1882
I’m sure your eye goes immediately to a real treasure in this vignette. The portrait miniature of Emilie Baker in her teens is encased in leather. Notice her curly hair. Emilie Loring’s characters often appreciate their natural “permanent waves.”
The copy of Where Beauty Dwells was inscribed to her son and daughter-in-law, Selden Melville Loring and Mary Valentine Loring.
To Selden and Mary Loring,
With the love and devotion of the author. 
Emilie Loring
March 1944
Emilie Loring gave this silver box to her grandson Selden with a handwritten note on Hotel Bellevue (Boston) stationery. We know that she loved silver boxes and had quite a collection. I wonder where she acquired this one.
“I collect everything. If I have a specialty it’s silver boxes…”  Keepers of the Faith
“.. and here I am with fifty dollars in my pocket, a year’s supply of Parisian clothes, forty silver boxes, some of them bought with your birthday money…”  Across the Years
…a red teakwood table laden with ivory carvings from China, and silver boxes from everywhere, and a bowl of yellow roses on a marqueterie desk.  Bright Skies
Each one of the silver boxes on the tables took her back to the place where she had acquired it.  I Hear Adventure Calling

The Lorings’ photos take us back to a lovely time–and not a fictional one. Emilie Loring lived in gracious times, in a charming setting. She would have especially enjoyed the Lorings’ heirloom tea and sherry before dinner.



5 thoughts on “An Heirloom Tea with the Lorings

      1. My mother, Linda Loring Loveland was given a gold and sterling silver amethyst and diamond ring that her grandmother, Emilie Loring, made years ago. My mom wears it daily. From what I can tell, Emilie was a talented silversmith.

        Liked by 2 people

      2. What a treasure! She wore it at Warren’s birthday party, so I got to see it. One of Emilie’s pieces received a good review in Gustav Stickley’s “The Craftsman” magazine. Had things gone differently, we might have been jewelry collectors.

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